The U.S. economy added only 120,000 jobs in March, far below expectations. The job gains were the smallest in five months. The report isn't a conclusive verdict on the economy. It could be an off month of weak growth or the sign of something more troubling — a serious hiring slowdown.
We head to Ohio now for Bruce Lackey's view of the economy. He's CEO of Happy Chicken Farms, a wholesale egg and dairy distributor in Urbancrest, Ohio. The company has been in business since 1953, now has 32 employees. Mr. Lackey joins me from his office. Welcome to the program.
BRUCE LACKEY: Well, thank you very much for the invitation.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish. The U.S. economy added 120,000 jobs last month according to the Labor Department. A few years ago, that would have had economists cheering. Today, they're using words like disappointing. Here's the problem, 120,000 is half as many jobs as the economy added in February and far fewer than most observers were expecting.
Three hundred thousand people are expected to line the River Thames in London tomorrow with millions more watching on TV. The reason? The 158th Annual Oxford Cambridge Boat Race.
Vicki Barker reports on what has become a British institution.
VICKI BARKER, BYLINE: Unloading kegs and kegs of beer, Richmond Hughes manages The Ship Pub in Hammersmith, a prime viewing position for the race. Hughes expects 5,000 people to jam his riverside garden tomorrow to watch the men from Oxford and Cambridge Universities compete.
To talk more about this, we're having our weekly political commentator David Brooks of the New York Times weigh in and filling in for E.J. Dionne is Clarence Page, columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Welcome gentlemen.
CLARENCE PAGE: Hi, Audie.
DAVID BROOKS: Good to be here.
CORNISH: So let's get going with those job numbers. Setback for the president, meaningful setback, David?
Now, we remember the man known as Caballa Blanco, or the White Horse.
MICAH TRUE: I started running a long time ago and I am an ultra-distance runner - is what people call it, but I just call it - I like to run.
CORNISH: That's Micah True in an interview with Runners World last year. True was a long distance runner made famous by Christopher McDougall's non-fiction bestseller "Born To Run: A Hidden Tribe, Super Athlete and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen."
Spring means cherry, pear and apple blossoms. But in many metropolitan areas, urban foresters ensure those flowering fruit trees don't bear fruit to keep fallen fruit from being trampled into slippery sidewalk jelly.
But a group of fruit fans in the San Francisco Bay Area is secretly grafting fruit-bearing tree limbs onto those fruitless trees.
Prom season is here. And there really isn't a more hyped event in high school social life. There's the fashion, the flowers, plans for the future and, of course, the after party. Photographer Mary Ellen Mark, now 72, recalls her 1958 prom with fondness.
"There I was, looking so perfect and happy facing my future," she tells NPR host Audie Cornish. "I was fascinated by my own prom pictures."
Hence her latest book: Prom, a collection of 127 portraits from 13 schools across the country, shot between 2006 and 2009.
In the spring of 1825, when Beethoven was 54, he became terribly sick. He was in bed for a month and he wrote to his doctor, "I am not feeling well ... I am in great pain." The doctor put Beethoven on a strict regimen, warning, "No wine, no coffee, no spices of any kind." The doctor also advised Beethoven to get away from the city to where he could find fresh air and "natural milk."
When I hear the word "Titanic," I picture a tuxedoed Leonardo DiCaprio, waiting at the bottom of a gilded staircase while the voice of Celine Dion swells in my mind. It's all Edwardian glitz and glamour, decadence and passionate love, the kind best enjoyed in a dark theater with plenty of popcorn. And then I quickly remember that the ship sinks, and that Titanic is more than just an epic film from my youth. On April 15, a century will have passed since the ship plummeted into the icy Atlantic, and it is the tragedy we should remember, not just the mythology surrounding it.